Thursday, July 31, 2008

Have been doing some serious mulling recently and I thought I would get some insights from the peanut gallery.

A friend of mine posed the following questions:

Can a terrorist be rehabilitated?
Does a rehabilitated terrorist have the right to talk peace?

I would extrapolate from that another question:

Can a society be rehabilitated?

Now, if we Israelis believe that the answers to the above questions are "no" then clearly, there is no point and will never be any point in conducting negotiations with the Palestinians. At this point, and for the forseeable future, anyone who is anyone on the Palestinian political map is going to be someone who was, at one point or another, associated with terrorism or a group which supported its use.

On the flip side, this also means that the Palestinians really have very little to gain from renouncing terrorism. Which means that we Israelis stand to lose a lot.

Note: I am not suggesting here that I believe that the Palestinians have renounced terror or that any particular Palestinian ex-terrorist currently in a position of authority in Gaza or the West Bank has been rehabilitated. I am just thinking out loud, as it were and invite you to do the same.

Though--please do try to be polite!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

What I did this Weekend, Part IV

Before I even got to the house I was introduced to our host, a smiling man in his 30's holding a toddler. He welcomed us to his house. I thanked him for having us and gave him the ruggelach, assuring him that they were from a good bakery (they were—I bought a few others to sample and the quality was indeed very, very high). I thought to myself: okay, he is smiling, and saying "welcome" but is he really adding in his head "…you evil Zionist bitch"? I decided that I would be better served by not thinking at this point.

Accordingly, I stopped thinking and I walked into the house. I found myself in a sitting room with couches and chairs forming a circle around the room. X sat down; I sat down next to her. There were…20 people? About a third were Israeli; the rest were Palestinian. Based on what I had heard about these Israeli-Palestinian "meet and greets", I expected to see at least a few foreigners there to help us play nicely. There were none.

Right then. Introductions were passed around. The lady of the house joined us, along with three other children. She thanked me for the rugellach. I thanked her for having me. I decided to quit while I was ahead and say nothing else the rest of the evening—that way I could not offend anyone. Gadi had other plans.

"Tell them your story".

People looked at me. I told my story. X translated my words into Arabic.

I told about the bombing. I told about my injuries. I told about President Katzav's visit and my inadvertent joke. I told them that I was minding my own business, buying rugellach. X asked me "and what type of cookies did you bring today"?

"Oh no…rugellach. But from a different bakery." She translated that as well. People laughed.

At the end, people were quiet. The lady of the house spoke.

"We are sorry about what happened to you".

No excuses. No pissing contests. No justifications.

We. Are. Sorry.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

There has got to be another way....

So gentle (and not-so-gentle but nonetheless creative) readers...I need some suggestions.

I hate blind dating.

I hate Jdate. And Dosidate. And every other dating website.

The thought of going on yet another blind date courtesy of one of these sites literally makes my stomach hurt. (I am not exaggerating--I feel the kind of dread that I have not felt since I sat for the Israeli CPA exams). And yet, if I want to ever meet anyone and start dating regularly and maybe even some day have that wonderful trip to Cyprus...I have no choice but to return to Jdate. Or, at least, so I am told.

Tell me something different. Tell me what I want to hear. Or at least something that I may not want to hear, but that does not have the same debilitating effect as "Jdate". In plain English (which I can speak though I choose not to most of the time)...how can a 30-something meet a guy "normally".

Because, at this point, "going to a sleazy bar where I can get wasted, pick up loose men and screw them in the bathrooms, b'ezrat Hashem!" is starting to look like a good idea, or at least an efficient one.

For those of you who want to give suggestions:

1) Read any comments--no suggestion can be given more than once.
2) By all means, feel free to have fun with this.

And--best of all, I promise to actually try all of the suggestions that are 1) feasible and 2) legal. And report back.

Monday, July 28, 2008

A mini post

I have little to say right now, but Haveil Havelim is up at Frume Sarah's place.

And a question...I was wondering if anyone else shares my little phobia. As follows: I find that, over the last several years (read "post-bombing, post-cancer and post-last year's emergency eye surgery right before the Alyn Ride") I use the phrase בעזרת השם, "G-d willing", all the time. As in, "Next Friday night, my friend and I are planning on going to a sleazy bar where we can get wasted, pick up loose men and screw them in the bathrooms. B'ezrat Hashem!"

I know why I do this ("this" referring to use of the phrase, and not of said loose men). I am constantly aware that my best-laid plans can easily be laid to waste, and in fact often are. The phrase has become something of an amulet against עין הרע "the evil eye". I have a constant fear that if I forget to give him credit, G-d will get pissy and will bitch-slap me again. And quite frankly, I would rather He did not. The problem is that it confuses people. I look like a typical Tel Avivit whore of babylon but I speak as though I just wandered out of Bnei Brak. I get a lot of bewildered "ummm...you're...religious????" remarks.

On the bright side, assuming that people take me for religious, I am doing loads to convince poeple that open-mindedness and diversity exist in observant Judaism.

Friday, July 25, 2008

What I did this Weekend, Part III

Shortly after turning into our destination village, Gadi pulled over to the side of the road where a number of other cars were parked. We were going to travel in a group to Jamal's house. My born-and-raised-in-the-United-States assumption was that the route was complicated and that this was to keep people from getting lost. It was only later in the evening that it hit me that this was for our protection: to put everyone on notice that we were under someone's protection and that attacking us would bring down the wrath of someone's clan upon the attacker. I am not sure if this makes me feel better or worse. Yes, it is nice to know that I was (relatively) safe but the concept that I was in a place where this is necessary is immensely disturbing.

While we were waiting, Gadi got out of the car, coaxed me to do the same and started to introduce me to the other participants—Christian and Muslim Palestinian. With a mixture of pride and amusement, he told some of them that this was my first visit to an Arab village. He told X that, despite my frequent "have a lot of Israelis been shot here" questions, I was doing rather well.

"Really?" I was surprised.

"Absolutely. Other people are shaking and holding on to the door handle."

Until last night, I was not sure whether he was being serious or not. Last night I met him and some others for drinks and it turns out that he was completely serious. (Between you and me, while Gadi may do humor, he does not when it comes to this topic).

We waited about ten minutes for the last members of our convoy to arrive. Gadi and the others chatted; for the most part I was quiet and observed. Once the last few made it, we all got back in our cars and resumed our journey. We passed through a town with narrow, winding streets and grey-white stone buildings and peppered with weed-covered stone ruins. The ruins—not unlike those one can see in Tzfat or Mea Shearim—immediately brought to mind the controversial terrorist house destruction policy. I decided to ask Gadi about what I was seeing.

"Are the ruins houses we destroyed?"

Gadi took a moment to look at one of the piles of rocks we were passing. " No, those just look old. When a house is destroyed by the IDF, the Palestinians rebuild it very quickly"

Duuuhh…the money from Iran and Iraq and Syria and whomever else is sponsoring the little exercise of trying to blow me up. Of course they rebuild. Well, never mind then.

We left the city behind and continued through the West Bank countryside—rolling gray-green hills. Finally, we pulled up at a small cluster of peaceful white houses, complete with flowers, birdies singing and the cheery, daredevil neighborhood kid on the bike zipping in front of our car and nearly getting killed.

G-d help me, I was in suburbia.

Well…apart from the minor details that instead of his house being built by a big conglomerate, Jamal built his house himself. And to be honest, there were only a few houses, and not 50 zillion. And everyone was speaking Arabic. And the road quality was not particularly high. But apart from that, yes.

At the same time I had asked Gadi about the dress code, I also asked if it were considered good manners to bring something to the dinner. He thought that would be nice. Wine was out; not only is the family Muslim but I have neither interest nor taste in wine and no idea how to choose a good one. Instead, I decided to go with what I know: sugar-loaded baked goods, in this case a big box of chocolate ruggellach from Jerusalem's Pe'er bakery. I got out of the car. I grabbed the sacrificial cookies. It was time to go in.

Well…not quite yet. First I had to say a few words for posterity.

Among the evening's participants were a couple photographers. I assumed that they were in charge of recording the evening's events. Before I went in, one of them approached me, video camera in hand and running. He wanted to know what I was thinking.

"I am a bit scared, to be honest".

"Scared? Why?"

"Ummm…well, it is not particularly PC to say this, but it is because they are Arab. And because this is an Arab village in the West Bank. And all I know about Arabs, Arab villages and the West Bank is what I read in the newspaper. The coverage is not particularly positive."

The photographer laughed.

"But I brought cookies. So hopefully they won't kill me." I opened up the box. "Would you like one?"

"No thanks".

As I was speaking it occurred to me that, his excellent Hebrew notwithstanding …the man was not Jewish. (I do not remember what sparked the realization). As it turned out, the photographer is not only Palestinian, but some years ago he was caught in the crossfire between Palestinians and IDF while photographing an irua (incident) and took a bullet.

Open mouth insert foot. Yes indeedy—I was getting this night off to a great start!

Well hell, if I was here anyway, and on such a roll, why not go in the house and see who else I could offend? Accordingly, I turned and walked into the house.

Coming soon— Part IV-thank G-d they have enough chicken. (Really, will try to get to the chicken. But honestly, it could also hit in Part V).

I am going to be famous!

Well, no. But I am going to be on a panel as part of the First International Jewish Bloggers Convention – Hosted by Nefesh B’Nefesh, and Powered by WebAds. The convention will be on Wednesday, August 20th from 5pm to 9pm (Israel time) in Jerusalem.


Space is limited and registration is required. You can register to attend in person, or watch it all by webcam and forum. Registration is at the following URL:
http://jump2.webadsisrael.com/?MyShrapnel.JBlogger.Convention


For those of you coming in person, the organizers promise great food. Waffles?

Hope to see lots of you there...well...maybe not those of you who hate me and (apparently) most everyone else and who think I deserve to be raped and pillaged right along with Lisa Goldman and anyone else of the left, the center and the center-to-right-but-not-right-enough . But the rest of you, certainly! I would love to see you! Should be lovely!

And as a special bonus completely random item, one of my new favorite songs for your listening pleasure.



This song is now officially on my wedding/40th birthday party (whichever comes first) playlist. According to the handy-dandy new Facebook "when will I get married" application, I will be getting married in three years, so the 40th birthday will win the big party, the presents and the playlist and the wedding will be the red headed stepchild and will win the elopement. Which is fine, because, quite frankly, if I ever do meet Mr. Right, the last thing I want to do is actually try to plan a wedding with him. That will just convince him that I am insane. No...I am convinced that the best tactic is to get him drunk and get his ass to Cyprus for a quickie wedding before he can change his mind.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

What I did this Weekend, Part II

***Warning: I was going to include a disclaimer warning Christians and Muslims that they are likely to be offended by this post. On further reflection, I realized that everyone is going to be offended by this post. As such, my disclaimer: you are going to be offended by this post.

In all seriousness, or at least my version of same: why on earth would I post about the stuff going on in my head, especially when some of it can be defined as ignorant at best, and hateful and/or racist at worst? There are three reasons. One: some of the stuff going on in my head is ridiculous and funny, when you take it out and look at it objectively and I do so like to amuse. Two: writing about what I think forces me to think about the things I do think about—always a valuable exercise. It is just that pesky exhibitionist side of me that inspires me to do so in such a public fashion. Three: I want you to be able to understand this visit in context and to see it through my eyes. Unfortunately, that involves sitting in my brain a bit. What can I say—I apologize for the clutter and I assure you that I am trying to bring some order. (Actually, the reason for the trip, but that is another story).

Yahla! Onwards! Or for those of you who missed part one, backwards. And then onwards.

At some point during the trip through the shtachim, perhaps to show how deep, intellectual and thoughtful I am (or to prove, for once and for all, that I am a dimwit with really no knowledge of the region, the people or the situation), I decided to share some of my political views. The conversation went roughly as follows:

“I think we should just do a population exchange—let the Muslim Arabs be part of the new state and take all the Christian Arabs.”

A choking, strangling sound emerged from Gadi's side of the car. I barreled on. “I mean, the Muslims do not want them. And we should want them—they are great citizens. Christians are well educated. Muslims…well, they tend to be more radical. And they hate us and have the whole Jihad thing going on. Christians seem to be far less likely to try and blow us up. I grew up with Christians. They are really very normal. More normal than you or I, to be honest.”

Gadi gave me a disbelieving look. He was clearly not sure whether he should be horrified or if he should burst out laughing. I reconsidered my stance.

“But…then…I do not know any actual Muslims. And it could be that meeting some would change my opinion.”

Gadi kept his response mild. “Possibly.”

“And I only know American Christians—who are no doubt, very different from Arab Christians." (For all I knew, the Arab Christians were united with the Arab Muslims in wanting to kill me and were waiting together behind the wall, in beautiful, co-religious harmony, for our car to pass so that they could jump out and shoot me. I kept this thought to myself). "Besides, some of our best terrorists have been Christian. Take the Spanish Inquisition, for example. Or the Cossacks. Or the Crusaders. Or Hitler. But don’t worry. I will not say anything about this at the dinner. ”

Gadi looked relieved. Clearly, he had been doubting the wisdom of inviting me along for this particular ride.

Now, at this point, I should have dropped the subject of local politics and moved onto something benign and non-controversial, such as global warming Of course, I did not. Because, what fun would that be? Besides, it seemed to me to be patently unfair that I should be the only one having heart attacks. Let Gadi have some as well.

So on to the Peace Process it was.

"It just seems to me that, so long as we are focused on keeping score—you did this, you did that—we are never going to achieve peace. We are going to have to just let the past go, to say 'forget about the past' and look forward. Like…a fresh start."

"Can we forget about that?" He pointed at the masses of houses making up Ma'ale Adumim or Efrat or whatever settlement we were passing at that moment.

"That is not what I meant." It was not—I was not talking about practical issues like how to deal with population centers. I was talking about wholly impractical matters, like how in the hell one is supposed to achieve peace between two sides when each of the sides sees itself as a victim—noble, holy, hideously abused, innocent of any wrongdoing and completely justified in its acts— and sees the other side as the spawn of Satan. You know, it just makes the process that much more difficult. I tried to explain what I meant, but apparently I did not succeed. Gadi repeated his question.

"Can we forget about that?"

I gave up. "We cannot move them".

"Why not?"

"Why should we have to? We have an Palestinian minority; why can’t a Palestinian state have a Jewish minority? The people living there could become citizens of the Palestinian state. Or we could do a land exchange".

"Yes, we could do that. But why can't we move them?"

"Because the Disengagement was absolute disaster."

"That is our own fault; we should have done better. Why can't we move them?"

I did not answer. I had no more answers. Well that is not true. I did have an answer. The problem was that I suspected that an answer along the lines of: "because another year of posters portraying Israeli soldiers as Nazis will probably push this country over the edge, to the point that even apathetic Tel Avivim, like myself, will be goaded into action and will rise up, en masse, and will rush out to the shtachim, and start whopping the settlers upside the head with our cappuccino mugs" was not going to satisfy him.

Besides which, apart from it being a political time bomb, I genuinely did not (and do not) understand why a Palestinian State can not have a Jewish minority. Israelis who raise the issue of overly high Arab populations in Israel are instantly accused of advocating ethnic cleansing. But if a future Palestinian State rejects a Jewish minority, that is just fine?

But there is that pesky time bomb factor Despite the fact that most of the Jews and Arabs in the shtachim are just nice, normal, non-violent, peace-loving people who just want to go about their lives (at least according to the PR on both sides), sooner or later, a bad apple will emerge from one side or the other and create an International Incident. Like, for instance: beating someone up, engaging in verbal abuse, burning fields, stealing olive groves, stoning cars or people, shooting someone, lynching someone or some other manner of incitement. The next thing you know, the International Incident will be followed up with a Payback International Incident which will be followed by Outrage in the Jewish World and/or the World Community, which could encourage a future, right-wing version of the Israeli government to march right back in to Take Control of Matters and to Protect our Fellow Jews and the Poor Palestinians who are Incapable of Ruling Themselves.

So yeah, I can understand why a Palestinian State might not be overly anxious to inherit a good-sized Jewish population which includes a respectable number of our more radical elements. For that matter, I can understand why an Israeli government genuinely interested in getting out and staying out of the West Bank would not be overly anxious to leave a good-sized Jewish population there. Simply put, the presence of good sized group of people who hate Arabs and who are hated in return would not contribute much to the stability of a Palestinian state. But, on the other hand—Israel already has, and would be left with, an equally respectably-sized population of the Arab radical elements who hate Jews. How can this be fair? Perhaps we should add a clause to any peace accord, or even to the proposed hostage law—we do not take back our violent, venom-spewing, radical right/left wing nutcases unless you take back yours.

Coming soon: Part III-thank G-d they have enough chicken.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

What I did this Weekend, Part I

"Have a lot of Israelis been shot here?"

This was the question I asked each time the scenery changed—about once every five minutes. I was in a car, in the West Bank, traveling to a dinner with Gadi, one of the organizers of a group which brings together wounded Israelis and wounded Palestinians for dialogue. The dinner was being hosted by one of the Palestinian members of the group. For all that the group is dedicated to non-violent action, to say I was nervous was an understatement. All I know about Arab villages is from what I read in the papers, and the papers rarely report on anything all that positive. In particular, I had not gotten the impression from the papers that the concept of "non-violent action" was particularly popular on in the Arab sector.

In order to increase my chances of emerging from the experience alive, I asked Gadi for instructions as to how to dress. I have never been to an Arab village before, much less an Arab's home, and certainly not the home of a Muslim Arab. Muslim=Taliban=religious radicalism =repression=violence=vandalism=attacks on non-conformists. (Of course, certain Jewish communities would also fit in perfectly with this equation. But then, I do not go to those neighborhoods either. I am afraid of them too. ) But Gadi was not sure how to answer. "Perhaps I should dress the way I would to go to a potentially rock-throwing religious neighborhood?" He supposed that would be fine. Accordingly, I broke out the extreme modesty garb: a long flowing skirt paired with a loose, long sleeved blouse. In order to ensure that there was no cleavage, I wore a tank top under the blouse. It was only once we were on the road and I discovered that the dinner I thought was to take place in Bet Jala was actually taking place somewhere else far, far way, and rather deep in the territories that I realized that my demure and modest outfit was, in fact, really offensive. I was dressed like a settler chick. Given the context in which I (eventually) found myself: an Arab village smack dab in the middle of settlements with which it doubtless has less than warm relationships, I would have been better off showing up in a tankini. That way, I would immediately be identified as a clueless, harmless, left-wing nutcase in town to do a solidarity-building sunbathing session, as opposed to a right-wing nutcase off to terrorize the populace. Granted, the sight of me in a tankini might also cause damage, but all one must do in order to offset that is throw a towel over me.

(As it turned out, my concerns about the modesty issue were overdone. Later on that evening, X, a Christian Palestinian who works with the group laughed when I explained my outfit to her, and pointed to her own, trendy garb. All of the other women there were similarly well dressed. I was more conservatively dressed than any other woman there, with the exception of the lady of the house, and if I had brought a head scarf, I could have given her a run for her money.)

But this was later. First we had to get to our destination. In between answering phone calls from other participants, telling me that I would be fine, that our hosts were lovely, that the other members of the group were lovely and committed to peace and answering my incessant questions about how likely I was to be shot in any given location, Gadi provided a running commentary about the areas we were passing through. The city we were passing through—Beit Jala. The city in the distance—Beit Lechem. The white city on the left—the Har Homa neighborhood of Jerusalem. The big, ugly gray thing appearing to border Har Homa—the separation fence. The odd looking metal section of the wall bordering the road—an emergency entrance for tanks. The road we were on—only open to Israelis, residents of the various settlements in the shtachim.

Well, apart from the metal section, at least this wall was pretty, made up of bricks of various colors. I said so. Gadi told me to look at the other side. As we went up a hill, I could do just that. The other side was, indeed, ugly. Then something clicked. "Wait—isn’t this the road where they were shooting Israelis?" Gadi conceded that it is. I consider asking whether that is why there is a wall then, to keep people from being shot. I decided not to. My mental energies were now directed pretty obsessively to waiting for someone to pop out and shoot me. Besides, the answer was pretty obvious.

Unless it is not, and there is another reason. Which could also be the case. Who the hell knows what is true around here?

Saturday, July 19, 2008

שבוע טוב

To help you guys start off this week on a lighter, brighter note than the last one....

Grant Proposals for Stupid Terrorists

Friday, July 18, 2008

Put up or shut up

"Do you think about the things you do think about?" ~Clarence Darrow


I thought I knew what I thought about the swap. I wrote about it. I read Treppenwitz's article and the Seraphic Secret article and found myself nodding.

But I also found myself shaking my head.

You see, I had an interesting chat on the subject of the swap with a co-worker yesterday. She is a sabra and a newlywed. Both she, her husband and probably most of their friends and relatives did service and her husband does milu'im (reserve duty). Anyway, when I brought up the swap, with my holding a "we are opening ourselves up to more kidnappings" position, her opinion was that the swap was the right thing to do. My manicurist and her daughter (also Israelis, also did the army, also have family members who serve) had a similar opinion. I did not check, but I suspect that if I were to call up my friend Rachel and ask her for her husband's opinion on the matter--he has opinions on everything and in particular this, as he fought in the Second Lebanon War--it would probably be a lot more similar to that of my coworker and my manicurist than to my own.

As they put it--soldiers put their lives on the line because they know that we are behind them. Israel does not desert her soldiers and if she did...how could she expect anyone to serve? Yes, the trade sucks, but we have done them before and we will do them again. We have a moral obligation to bring the boys home. It should also be pointed out that those doing the service already feel like they are getting shit on between the draft dodging, reserve duty dodging, low enlistment rates from wealthier communities and blanket exemptions granted to the Haredi community. Suffice it to say that to add a policy of desertion to the mix will not do much to improve morale.

In general I have found that the opinions, including my own, become a lot more hard core the further the person is removed from the reality. One has the luxury of being "idealistic" when it is all theoretical anyway. For me, to the extent that I have no children in the army, have never had children in the army, did not serve myself, have no spouse who served or who doing reserve duty...and in short, can propose policies "risk free", I have that luxury. So do a lot of you. Not all of you--but a lot of you.

I think it is time we take on some of the risk. It is easy enough to do. As my father likes to say: put up or shut up.

Take a stand. I invite each of you who condemns the trade to take a stand now. Let us suppose that tomorrow, your mother or your father or your spouse or one of your children are kidnapped. No one knows for sure if they are alive or dead. Tell the world now what your preference is. Can we negotiate? Can we trade? Or do we let your loved one rot? If your loved one is dead, okay, so you are giving up on a corpse and some closure. You will suffer but they will not. But if they are alive...you are abandoning them to a life in hellish captivity.

Please state your beliefs for the world to know, so that when this happens to you, when it is no longer theoretical, when it is no longer something happening far away or at least to somebody else in another community, when it is your little boy or your little girl or your spouse, we can hold you to it. When you cry to the world "but that is my baby..." the world can tell you "sorry, but we don't negotiate with terrorists and you agreed with that rule!"

It is not that easy, is it? I am not saying that I think that the swap was necessarily a great idea. To be honest, I am just as conflicted as I was before. But I do think that one must recognize how complex the issue is.

Hezbollah is heinous. We are not as mean and nasty and vile and unspeakably evil as Hezbollah...but do we want to be? Is that really our goal?

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Some Heartening Stuff

It would appear that there are Lebanese who are not planning on joining the parties celebrating Samir Kuntar's homecoming. Do not get me wrong--they have a very different take on the situation than we do. Some of them probably hate Israel and Israelis. Nonetheless, they find the concept of giving a hero's welcome to a man who murdered a child in cold blood as bizarre.

I find that comforting. It makes me feel better to know that there are sane people on both sides. That way I can tell myself that calm is theoretically possible. (Subdued, non-violent loathing...that is all I ask. Is that really so much?)

Yes, I have been drinking the Kool-Aid. No, I have no intention of sharing. Anyway--for your perusal....

Ms Levantine

Beirut Spring

Lebanese Political Journal

Lebanon Foreign Policy Blog

Fuck Lebanon (funny post, in a totally obnoxious way)

Blacksmiths of Lebanon

The Ouwet Front

איזה סוג ניצחון?

What sort of victory is this?

Israel gets corpses and an gives terrorists an open invitiation to kidnap Israelis.

Lebanon gets a murderer and gives Hezbollah an open invitation to take over the government.
We both got a destructive war.

We both may get additional destructive wars in the future.

Right now, I am trying to convince myself that, in Lebanon, there are people who are disgusted at the concept of celebrating the return of Kuntar and who are horrified that a war was fought to bring him home.

I do not care what Hezbollah says, what Olmert says, what Miki Goldwasser says or what anyone says. Forget about politics and power struggles and whether or not this hurts or helps Kadima or Hezbollah. When push comes to shove, what matters are the ordinary people of Lebanon and Israel. And when you look at the matter in that light, I really do not see any winners here. We have all lost this game.

I realize that the decision as to whether or not to conduct a prisoner exchange is not a simple one. And I realize that there are valid arguments on both sides. And that giving up on the soldiers would also entail losing. That is precisely is the problem. In a situation like this, again, there is no winning hand.

Do me a favor. Forget about politics for a minute. Forget about the usual pat responses: "Olmert just wants to stay in power" or "Hezbollah does not care if people die". We have all heard that before. Think about people. Think about yourself. How is any of this mess doing you any good? How will it make your life better?

This is just sad. I am so sad today....

(Forgetting about the usual pat responses includes NOT posting them in the comment section to this post. Thanks).

Monday, July 14, 2008

In honor of Binny and Rachel... Parshat Balak פרשת בלק

Of course I would like you to stick around a bit and read this post, but once you are all done, head on over to Jack's for Haveil Havalim #173 and some fine reading material.

And now, something I wrote a while ago. It is rather silly, but I like it.


Nowadays, everyone’s an expert. Prophets do this, this and this. The signs of a prophet are x, y and z. Really, it gets tiring, that pigeonholing. It’s the Americans, mostly. I mean, Jews in general cannot deal with uncertainty well—got to have a ready answer for everything, but European Jews at least can deal a bit more with the unknown. All those haunted castles, I think. It creates a certain mental atmosphere, you know what I’m saying? And the Sephardim and Mizrachim-forget it. As superstitious as they come. That’s from hanging out with the cousins. But Americans are just so narrow about things. They like everything neat and tidy-bagged up and simple. Why, I was saying just the other day to Yashar (Yashar is my donkey, just so you know), “those New York Jews, no more depth than a wadi pool at the end of August….”

What, what? I talk to my donkey? Of course I talk to my donkey. Who else am I going to talk to? I tell you, no one else has got sense. Kids, adults, these days none of them have a lick of sense. But Yashar, now he’s got sense. And we have a lot of history, Yashar and I. Yeah, I threaten him now and again, ‘Yashar! That’s it! I’m selling you to the glue factory’. I yell, really let him have it. Then he gives me the guilt trip, starts sobbing how he has always served me and carried me faithfully and now that he is old and his rheumatism is acting up and with my love of baklava I’m not as light as I used to be, if you understand his meaning, but if that is how he can serve me…by going to the glue factory…”. Really puts on a show, that Yashar, tears, lots of self righteous snorting and the heavy martyred tone. But really, none of it is serious. Just talk, right? Though I hate it when he brings up my weight. Okay, I put on a bit, but not that much. Between you and me—the problem is his joints—they have just gone. He is an old donkey. It happens.

What, you thought the stuff in the Torah was a one-time thing? Oh, that is what I love about you Jews! So literal! Nu, did I seem surprised? Did I say “Holy Idols Batman! My donkey is talking like a human?” So my donkey is talking. So what? Talking he can do. Its shutting up that’s the problem. To tell you the truth, sometimes I think I am going to have to sell him to the glue factory, just to have some quiet around here.So Yashar is a good donkey. Old, but a good conversationalist and enjoys a good Turkish coffee. None of that fancy-shamncy filtered stuff. He tried it once. “Balaam”, he said, “It’s like drinking water. Colored water. I’m gonna have to drink six cups to get my caffeine. I’ll be up and back and forth pisching all night. I won’t sleep a wink. And so expensive, really. You’re meshugana to buy this stuff.” I argued with him—you can’t be such a stick in the mud, gotta be willing to try new things, move with the times. He was right though—it is like water. So we are back to the Turkish.

One thing Yashar does not like is angels. On that, at least, we are in agreement. Yeah, they are pretty and they dress well, but I tell you, if you have to deal with them on a regular basis, like we did back in the day, angels are a pain. Every one’s a wise guy and they are all trying to top the last big trick. Used to be that they were fine with just dressing up as travelers and stopping by for a visit. Do a bit of shazaam a bing a bang at the end, and everyone knows they’re angels. You know, some dignity. And then someone decides that this is not enough and that he is not an angel, a professiona. No, he is an artist! Oy gevalt! Pop out of this bush, Disappear, reappear. Materializing sheep from empty air. Soaring up to the heavens in a blaze of flame. Okay, it’s impressive, I’ll give you, but who has the time? Makes you dizzy, that’s what it does. Why G-d doesn’t keep them in line I do not know. Every so often I ask Him. “Nu, G-d, what is with these angels these days? Artists? I don’t know from art but really, G-d this is killing me. What, you want to give me a heart attack? Because that is what is going to happen. One of your angels will appear before me with a roaring lion and that’s it, that’s the end of your servant Balaam. I am not as young as I used to be”. But He just does the usual, looks wise and thoughtful and nods his head. “Yes, yes, I know, but ever since man got the Torah, well, I had the angels give them something to make them feel special, and to validate them”. Validation shmalidation. Really, sometimes I think God spoils them, but hey, who am I to tell Him? They are his servants. Just don’t let them give me a heart attack.

That angel we met on the way to Balak is a good example. Now I know, you guys think I was off disobeying G-d’s orders, off to curse Israel and so on and so forth. What, G-d didn’t put any brains in your head? Think about it. You think G-d is going to curse on my say so? It does not work that way. I know it, G-d knows it, Yashar knows it. Everyone knows it. G-d does what G-d wants. Those are the rules. Okay, okay, Balak didn’t know it, but that was the whole point of the visit. Between you and me, Balak—decent guy, great fighter, but a bit of a one-track mind. You think you know from slow? I tell you, you know nothing. This guy, he is a brickhead. He’s from my mother’s side, may she be blessed and remembered as a tzadikas, but her family…oy…next to them the people of Chelm were Nobel Prize physicists. Between the whole family, my blessed mother excluded, of course, they don’t have a whole brain to call their own. And this Balak is a true member of the tribe.

So, what was I saying. Oh yeah. So when Einstein here gets it into his head that I can override G-d and sends mission after mission asking me to contribute curses to his fight there is no overcoming that with logic. Not that I don’t try. Read the book, it’s right there. “Forget it, if G-d doesn’t authorize a curse, I can’t curse them. It won’t work” I tell him. “No go. Nada.” But he keeps going on and on and on. Sends this one, that one, then the wise men of Midian. Now that was great. Between you and me, those wise men had just as much trouble with Balak as I did. They knew the rules as well as Yashar and I; they came just to keep him quiet and happy. Balak being a bit short-tempered, you know. Not violent, heaven forbid, but short-tempered. It comes from being a fighter. All that violence is terrible for you. Yashar, he does not even like to watch violent movies. “You saw what happened to Balak? How can you watch that garbage, when you saw what happened to Balak?” he always says. I think he is going a bit overboard, but I am not so fond of the blood either. So we do comedies. Much better for your body too. Less stressful for your organs. At our age, you can’t be too careful. Anyway, the wise men come surrounded by their Moabite ‘honor guard’ and deliver the message. I get rid of the Moabites—tell them that since the Midianites were strangers I would have to provide hospitality, take full responsibility, yada yada yada but since the Moabites were familiar with the area, they should feel free to enjoy the city. Did they enjoy? Did they enjoy! Of course, every one of them claimed that he was off to visit his mother, even the guys whose mothers had died and who had come to me for special blessings in her honor. You know, really, none of these Moabites were all that bright. That’s probably why they died off, come to think off it. What can you say…. Anyway, once the Moabites left, we had a great time, me, Yashar and the wise men. But anyway, nothing is working, nothing is getting through to Balak, and finally I say to Yashar, “I don’t know what to do with this kid. He just is not getting it. A real nudnik this one”. Yashar just snorted. To tell you the truth, he never really warmed to Balak. Ever since Balak called him a dumb ass there was no love lost between them. For all he cared, he was just as happy leaving Balak to have a nervous breakdown.

But where was I…oh, the angel. Balak is family and he is really beside himself over this so I finally decided that if the only way to teach Balak is to show him, then we would go show him. G-d agreed, though he reminds me that I cannot curse Israel, even in show. I admit, privately I did think, it did occur to me that so what, I say a little curse or two, G-d isn’t going to pay any attention, the Israelites will be fine and Balak will calm down and stop sending missions. He’s a nice boy. Stupid, maybe a bit too touchy with the sword, but not a bad kid. Yashar wasn’t buying any of that. “You putz! G-d does not want Balak calm! G-d wants Balak to be out of his mind with fear”. Now like I said, Yashar is not exactly what one would call unbiased. But he was right in this case, and sure enough, G-d decided to send an angel to remind me.

So here we are riding along and all of a sudden Yashar stops short and then starts going willy nilly this way and that. I immediately think he is trying to fake one of his dizzy spells, which is what he always does when he wants to get out of something. “Balaam, I’m really very dizzy. I’m feeling very weak. I cannot see straight”. Then he’ll start acting as though he were really dizzy: staggering, wandering around in circles, bumping into walls and the like. I never buy it. Believe me, I have dragged him to every specialist out there and there is not a thing wrong with him. “You are as healthy as a horse!” I yell at him. “With this mishegas you are wasting my time? You’ll live to be 100. You’ll outlive me. You’ll outlive the doctors. Enough already!” But today, I am really upset because there are other people there. So this time I just pull out my sword and starting yelling at him that I am going to kill him. Back then I used to threaten him with a sword. Now, like I said, it’s glue. Whereupon Yashar immediately goes into his martyr shtick. And in all this, he completely ignores the angel who then decides that he is going to have to materialize if he expects to get any attention.

So now there is this big "poof" and who appears but Malachi, who is one of my least favorite angels. I see that he has gone for drama today: blazing sword, flowing white robes, billowing smoke and lots of background music. Yashar and I immediately stop yelling at each other and I start yelling at Malachi. “What, you want I should have a coronary, right here on the mountain?”
“Better you should have a coronary than you should disregard G-d’s will.”

In addition to thinking he is the next Kurt Russel, Malachi is one of the smarmy, self-righteous types of angels. His type drives me bananas. Not at all like Gabriel. Gabriel is a mensch—talks to you straight. But I got Malachi today…. What can I do? I deny everything. “Heaven forefend! What is this about disregarding G-d’s will?” At which Yashar immediately jumps in. “Didn’t I tell you Balaam? Didn’t I tell you it was a bad idea? ‘I just want to calm him down before he drives us into a nutbin’, you said. ‘Just relax him a bit’ you said. ‘G-d won’t mind. How will that hurt the Children of Israel’ you said. Didn’t I say that was a bad idea? ‘That’s a bad idea, Balaam’. I told you. But did you listen to me? Oh no. ‘Biased’ you said. ‘I am biased’. Now look at us, we have a screwball angel who wants to be the Cheshire Cat on us. I hope you are happy. You are responsible for this Balaam. You have no one to blame but yourself.” Now I start yelling back at Yashar.

Before we can get too into our argument, Malachi cuts in. I don’t think he is accustomed to being so ignored and besides, the Cheshire Cat comment rubbed him the wrong way. “Listen, just stick to the script, okay? Don’t improvise”. This is another thing about Malachi—he loves that actors lingo stuff. Yashar and I agree “Yes, yes, yes” and Malachi poofs himself off, complete with flames, smoke and harp exit music.

So we don’t improvise. We go and do the job. Well, okay, on the way Yashar and I do decide to borrow a bit from Malachi and make the whole thing a bit more dramatic by having Balak build lots of altars, as many times as Balak has us move around, and then each time, give the blessing. It is actually Yashar’s idea. He points out that if we make an event out of each move, Balak will give up sooner. And since he was right about the other thing, I agree to go along with it. And it worked. Three times and we were out of there. Though we had to leave quickly.

Nowadays it is quieter. We are pretty much retired, putz around, lay out at the pool, drink coffee. Here and there I will do some magic tricks, but nothing like I used to, you understand. Baruch Hashem, I don't have to put up with any more angels...

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Something new and different

Conversation with my friend Gayle, over lunch, this weekend:

Me: I do not know how I am feeling. It is hard to put into words.

Gayle: ....

Me: I have been reading all about the lives of my high-school classmates and realizing that I really would not want their lives. Shocking.

Gayle: ....

Me: Let me see....happy? No, that is not it.

Gayle: ....

thinking thinking thinking

Me: Content. I am content.

Gayle puts down her fork and continues to be speechless for a moment. A big smile appears on her face.

Gayle: I am so happy to hear you say that! Really, I am so glad.

Me: Yes. So am I.....

I smile too.

Nice to have friends like that, no?

Thursday, July 10, 2008

כי איתי אל Ki Iti El

I meant to post this at the very end, but have a friend who could use it now. (Dubi--I expect the report we discussed to be waiting in my mailbox this time tomorrow morning! Don't worry if you do not have faith--I will have faith for you).
I do not feel like this always, but I feel like this some of the time. I wish I could be better, but, alas, זה מה שיש (that is the way it is).
אל תירא מפחד פתאם, ומשאת רשאים כי תבא. עצו עצה ותפר, דברו דבר ולא יקום, כי עמנו אל. ועד זקנה אני הוא, ועד שיבה אני אסבל, אני עשיתי ואני אשא, ואני אסבל ואמלט.
Do not fear sudden terror, or the holocaust of the wicked when it comes. Plan a conspiracy and it will be annulled; speak your piece and it shall not stand, for G-d is with us. Even till your seniority, I remain unchanged; and even till your ripe old age, I shall endure. I created you and I shall bear you; I shall endure and rescue.

This is my favorite prayer. It is in the prayerbook, though we never say it in synagogue. When we get to it, I read it to myself. Even when I am not in synagogue, the prayer stays with me. Its words have implanted themselves in my brain and accompany me wherever I go. Ki imanu El, for G-d is with us. Ki iti El: for G-d is with me.

The bombing has given this prayer special meaning. The fact that I am not dead, of course, is cause for gratitude. And still I find that this enormous gift of my life pales in the face of the countless small gifts I have received since. These small gifts are what make our lives worth having and living.

Ki iti El. About three weeks after I was released from the hospital, I had a meltdown. The stress of the last five weeks hit me like a ton of bricks. I could not call anyone because it was Shavuot and most of my friends were observant and would not answer the phone even if I called. I sat holed up in my room with the door closed and trying to cry quietly as any loud outbursts would freak out my roommate. Suddenly, my friend Yael showed up at my front door. She came to my room and sat with me. With her there, I became a sodden, hysterical, irrational mess. She did not tell me that it would all be all right, even though it would be. She did not tell me that this too was for the best, even though it might be. She did not tell me that I really was very lucky, even though I was. She told me that it was about time that I lost it and that it was normal and that no, none of this is fair. Sometimes you do not need someone to make you feel better, you need a friend to let you be sad. And sometimes, when you are all alone, you need a friend to miraculously appear on your doorstep.

Ki iti El. My cousin Talia happened to call that very same Shavuot afternoon. Talia is not just my favorite cousin in Israel; she is my favorite cousin anywhere. She lives in Tel Aviv and virtually never comes to Jerusalem, so her support up to this point had been primarily via the phone. But that day, out of all the days, she called to let me know that it turned out that a friend was coming to Jerusalem and could give her a lift. Could she come visit? By the time she arrived, I had recovered from my hysteria, but was still so panicked and overwhelmed over various issues that had accumulated and had to be dealt with. Talia not only knows how things are done in Israel, but she knows what you should be thinking when you do them: yihiyeh beseder, it will be okay. She listened to my litany of woes, chided me gently for panicking, and then proceeded to dispense instructions. Try this. Speak to this person. Request this. Do not hesitate to ask for what you need. It is all going to be okay. By the time her friend came to collect her, I was calm and had plan.

Ki iti El. It is the friends who filled my prescriptions and the strangers who filled my refrigerator. Ki iti El. It is the man who heard about me from my bosses. He called me when I was still in the hospital to tell me that he only had one eye, and that he had a perfectly normal life. His call came less than an hour after my father broke the news to me that I might not regain sight in my right eye, and while I was lying in my bed, wondering what my life would be like, and if I would still be able to paint. Ki iti El. It is the family in Atlanta, Georgia who heard about me and arranged to have a beautiful cake delivered to my house, along with a card telling me to be strong. The cake arrived as I sat in my front hall, waiting for my friend Edith to come and take me to an emergency eye appointment. I had started seeing spots in my vision and we suspected my retina had detached. I was terrified, but the note gave me courage. Ki iti El. It was the check for $100 from my Aunt Pearl, accompanied by a note warning me in the strictest terms that the money was to be used for something fun. Both the note and the check were waiting for me at home after I got back from an appointment with a specialist who told me that I really had to do something to reduce my stress levels which were so elevated that my short-term memory was being affected. I used the money to join a gym. (And not to take on a lover, or five, as he suggested).

Ki iti El. I moved out of my parent’s house when I was 18, and spent four years working 60 to 80 hours a week to make ends meet. Then I worked my way through college—another five and a half years of lean times. Since the day when I moved out of my parents' house, I cannot remember a time when I was not haunted by the specter of financial disaster. Quitting my job and moving to Israel only intensified my fear. Within twenty-four hours of landing in Israel I was calling accounting firms, and within two weeks I had two part-time jobs. In such a manner I managed to get by, but when I was injured, I was sure that the game was up and financial catastrophe was on its way. I lay in my hospital bed and did mental calculations of how long my savings would last me, and how I could manage to establish myself in the country if I had to use them all up to get myself through until I could go back to work. But in fact, my savings stayed intact. So long as I needed, both the State of Israel and the Jewish community in Israel and abroad made sure that I had I needed, plus extra so I would not need to worry. I cannot say how many times since those days in the hospital I have bought some piddling little item—a notebook for $5—and have found myself whispering a prayer of thanks. How fortunate I am not only to have the money, but also to be in a position where I do not have to think twice about making the purchase.

Ki iti El. For the first time ever, I feel secure. I am not alone. I do not know what will happen to me in the future, but have faith that, whatever it is, I will receive what I need. I may not get everything I want, but if ever need something desperately, it will be provided.

Ki iti El. For G-d is with me. G-d created me and He bore me; He endured and rescued me.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Miracle Hunting

First--a public service announcement. Haveil Havalim #172, the Old Fogey Edition, is up at Daled Amos.

And now, allow me to present one of my pet peeves.

Post-bombing, I did a fair amount of public speaking. In the process, I met and heard about other people who had been injured and I got to see the responses of the outside world, of spectators, to these injuries. Combined with the reactions I collected to my own bombing I drew a interesting and disturbing picture of how the world in general or at least the world I know, views us Poor Sad Heroic Victims of Terror ®. Similar to the responses I noted to my account of the bombing, these reactions have nothing to do with the person who was actually injured, and everything to do with the viewer.

Many viewers are meaning and miracle hunting. We are useful to them. Many miracles and much meaning can be found in us. Viewers objectify us. They mine us and our stories for inspiration and happy endings; for their precious miracles and meaning. They ignore the past, present and future pain. They ignore whatever went on in-between then and now. They ignore reality.

Allow me to present the hospital PR specialist. She was giving a presentation about her work at a hospital, including her work with those injured in terrorist attacks. At one point, she told us about a young woman who had suffered severe burns. After a grueling and very extended period of treatment, the woman had recovered, though her hands were badly scarred. In a conversation with this woman, the young woman expressed concern that guys would notice that she had the hands of an old woman. The woman told us that she responded with a heartfelt "oh no, they will see a brave young woman!" Everyone in the audience applauded. Some of them cried

Because, you know, that is what most men are looking for: brave young women. Because most men look at women with a view of finding one that has an impressive poor sad heroic victim of terror story. As opposed to one that turns them on. I was appalled, though not surprised. Why not tell the girl the truth? Why treat her as though she were an idiot? She is right. The scars may make it tough, and in particular as long as she is self-conscious. Even if she is not self-conscious, yes, the scars will bother some guys. Period. But they will not bother all of them, and probably not even most. Tell her the truth. Attitude is everything. If she is cool with her scars, most guys will be as well. Be practical—help her to get the attitude.

But this woman was really not looking to help the young woman. Perhaps she thought she was. But seriously, who benefited here? The woman benefited from her answer. The audience benefited from her answer. I sincerely doubted that the young woman benefited. So, who was the answer for? If it was not for the young woman, why not? She was the one who had suffered. Why did the audience deserve a miracle and meaning more than she deserved an honest answer? More than she deserved to be treated like a thinking being as opposed to a symbol.

There was the patient I met, if "met" could even be considered the right word. He had suffered a serious head injury and was looking at years of therapy; and perhaps even spending the rest of his life in the hospital or a similar institution. To say that he was not with it at this point would be an understatement. Some years later, I do not remember how, I heard how this guy had told a friend that he wished he had died in the bombing. The person who related the story to me was appalled. How could this man think that way? His life was a miracle. How could he not realize that?

I do not remember how I responded; I probably said something non-committal and let it go. What I would have liked to say is: a miracle for whom? For this guy, condemned to spend his days, all day, every single day, trapped in his body, trapped in his own brain? What sort of future does he have? What sort of life? Can this even be considered a life? Why should he be content with his life? Because him being around makes you feel good? Because it gives you the warm fuzzies? Because then you can talk about the great medical care available in Israel? So that, after a full, satisfying day in your full, satisfying life you can look at him and feel inspired? You know—seeing the hand of G-d and how this guy being alive is such a miracle and blahblahblah? Is that supposed to satisfy him?

Would it satisfy you?

Where is the miracle? Maybe the miracle is that, after all this time, he got it together enough to express an opinion. Will you recognize that miracle, or will you pooh pooh his thoughts as though he were a silly child. "Oh, you silly boy! Now, you just settle down there. Shut up and continue to be inspiring".

In fact, I think he is being reasonable. I think he is being reasonable because, when I strip away the drama and ask myself "what if this were you", my reaction is pretty much in line with his. Of all the fates, serious head injuries scare me the most. My head, and not my body, is me. Every once in a while I will meet someone who suffered a head injury in a bombing or an accident or whatever, and who is severely impaired—who is no longer himself—as a result. They frighten me. I avoid these people…even though I realize that this means that I am not a particularly good person. I would love to be able to think "there but for the grace of G-d go I", but hell, for all I know, that could be me next week.

This man's fate would not be a miracle if it were me. Would it be a miracle if it were you?

I am not saying that there is no miracle here. I am not saying that a young girl with disfigured hands cannot meet and marry a fantastic man who will, indeed, see her as both brave and beautiful. Nor am I saying that it is impossible for a man who suffered a serious head injury cannot find meaning in his life. I am saying that life is not that simple. All the world is not a stage. The tragedies of others are not plays put on for your entertainment, or your benefit. If they manage to dig up miracles and meaning, these gems belong to them, and not to you.



Tuesday, July 1, 2008

And now for something nice and random

***UPDATED**** Now with a translation to English

He is controversial in some circles.

He has a kinda weasel look about him.

He is a brilliant musician.

I am addicted to this song. I do not care if it is sexist. I do not care if it seems to celebrate a rather simplistic method of dealing with life's challenges. I just love this song. The music, the lyrics...everything.

I have now listened to it FIVE times in a row.

So, you know, I thought I would share the obsession.

Ladies and Gentlemen: Aviv Gefen singing Black & White.

Enjoy!



Translation (and all errors) by me....

You wrote me that you are alone
You are living with him and feel on the side (does not translate well)
And to be with him is like years alone

Don't wait, don't let life go by in black and white
I will add colors; I am coming to save you.
Wait—I am on my way to you
I am coming, I am coming, I am coming.

You told me that I am like a postcard
That someone sent you from a wonderful place far away
Like the Garden of Eden in the fall

Don't wait, don't let life go by in black and white
I will add colors; I am coming to save you.
Wait—I am on my way to you
I am coming, I am coming, I am coming.

You told me, "listen, you don't understand"
One does not shoot at a fuel truck on the freeway (sounds a lot better in Hebrew)
You told me, "listen, you don't understand"
One does not shoot at a fuel truck on the freeway

Don't wait, don't let life go by in black and white
I will add colors; I am coming to save you.
Wait—I am on my way to you
I am coming, I am coming, I am coming.

Years alone….

כתבת לי שאת לבד
את חייה איתו ומרגישה בצד
ואיתו זה כמו שנים, לבד

אל תחכי, אל תתני לחיים לעבור בשחור לבן
אני אוסיף לך צבעים, אני בא להציל אותך
חכי, אני בדרך אלייך
אני בא, אני בא, אני בא

אמרת שאני כמו גלויה
שמישהו שלח לך ממקום רחוק ונפלא
כמו גן עדן, בסתיו

אל תחכי, אל תתני לחיים לעבר בשחור לבן
אני אוסיף לך צבעים,
אני בא להציל אותך
חכי, אני בדרך אלייך
אני בא, אני בא, אני בא

אמרת לי תשמע, אתה לא מבין
לא יורים על משאית בנזין בכביש המהיר.
אמרת לי תשמע, אתה לא מבין
לא יורים על משאית בנזין בכביש המהיר.

אל תחכי, אל תתני לחיים לעבור בשחור לבן
אני אוסיף לך צבעים, אני בא להציל אותך
חכי אני בדרך אלייך
אני בא, אני בא, אני בא

שנים לבד...